it’s april (yes, april; my darling) it’s spring!
yes the pretty birds frolic as spry as can fly
yes the little fish gambol as glad as can be
(yes the mountains are dancing together)
I was about twenty the first time I read e.e. cummings’ poem when faces called flowers float out of the ground (first line). I just knew one day I’d get to go to New Hampshire and visit Joy Farm, e.e. cummings’s summer home, because I just knew it was there he found those mountains dancing. And, sure enough, in the mid 1980s, fate brought Doug and me to New Hampshire and soon after, in April (of course), we made our way up to Madison in search of Joy Farm and those dancing mountains.
As I remember, it was a weekend and, of course, being April, lots of snow still on the ground. We managed to find the entrance to the long driveway leading up to Joy Farm, but it was fenced off and clearly not passable by car. Undaunted, me, already in full swing with those dancin’ mountains, was not so easily dissuaded! So, we made our way back to town to search for someone who might be able to give us some kind of permission or okay to venture up to the Farm by foot. Doug, with feet a little closer to the ground, well actually on the ground, kept reminding me that those mountains would not be dancin’, so unabashedly, with me in jail! Luckily, we were able to locate a man with some authority, in one of the local establishments, who gave us the okay. I remember he looked quite puzzled when I, especially, could not be convinced to return in a couple of months when the road to the Farm would be passable. Didn’t he know those mountains were dancing now?!
So, at last, up the long driveway we went! The house had been vacant awhile yet still felt to be alive, standing, waiting patiently for the return of bare feet, frivolous chatter, the smell of barbecue and night stargazing off the porch. The grounds were open and rambling and a small gazebo-like room, in the middle of the back field, seemed timeless.
But, without a doubt, it was those dancin’ mountains, cradling, remembering, holding us, that kept me frolicking round and round as if I could somehow fly right into the center of their waking, unguarded alive; we’re alive, dear: it’s (kiss me now) spring! pulse.
Away with respectable composure! Down with petty self-consciousness! Let’s dive as the pretty birds dive to the heart of the sky and climb as the little fish climb through the mind of the sea!
It’s April! We’re sun-drenched alive! Our faces like flowers float out of the ground! We’re opening as every leaf opens without any sound! We’re quivering, waking, pulsing as the little fish quiver…so you and so I…
Yes, like us, the mountains are dancing together.